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plant. but that's really not so. that would be wrong to consider or conclude. the costs weren't cheaper. the costs just got shifted. they got shifted from the companies and the consumers in the polluting states to the lungs of children in rhode island and other downwind states. it is the lungs of children and adults and seniors in rhode island that are actually paying for that cheap electricity. happily, mr. president, and at last the e.p.a. has begun to remedy this unfair and wrongful public health situation by requiring utilities in upwind
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states to control their pollution. under the good neighbor provision of the clean air act. because while a tall stack will send uncontrolled pollution farther than a short stack would, the most effective way to reduce pollution is to install pollution controls. prompted by petitions from our downwind states, the bush e.p.a. attempted to set pollution limits for states to contribute to unhealthy pollution levels outside their borders. however, on review, the d.c. circuit court of appeals told them that they had not gone far enough. so the e.p.a. went back to the drawing board and crafted the cross-state air pollution rule that has been announced today which will cap the pollution that can be produced in upwind states like ohio, pennsylvania, west virginia, illinois and north carolina. those caps were designed based on each state's contribution to
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pollution in states like rhode island. and it will ratchet down whenever e.p.a. tightens air quality standards based on the latest and best science. as i said, that rule was finalized today. so thank you, e.p.a. i commend the e.p.a. for tpaoeupbzing that cross -- for finalize that cross-state air pollution rule. i also urge the e.p.a. to update the national ozone air quality standard based on the recommendations from the clean air science advisory committee. this will lead to further pollution reductions upwind of rhode island and further benefit for rhode islanders. these rules will bring us closer to the day when the coal power plants on this chart start taking responsibility for their pollution and stop exporting that pollution into rhode island and other states. when they install pollution
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control equipment rather than sending their pollution to where it becomes someone else's problem and to when rhode island children can play outdoors safely without the risk of an asthma attack. i'm looking forward to that day, and i know the people of rhode island are too. when you drive in and that phorbg radio tells -- and that morning radio tells you that today is another bad day and that children and seniors should stay indoors and can't play, can't take a walk, can't engage in anything that has exertion, it's frustrating when there's nothing that you can do about it. the rhode island department of environmental management could pass regulations until it was blue in the face. the rhode island general assembly could write new laws all day long, and it would make no difference because the bombardment of outside pollution on our state is what is driving these health problems. that's why e.p.a. is so
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important. we would have no voice in this if it were not for a national environmental protection agency that can look out for small states like ours that are on the receiving end of this kind of a pollution dump from the coal-fired uncontrolled plants in the midwest. so i thank very much the presiding officer, and i yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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mr. whitehouse: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from rhode island. mr. whitehouse: i ask unanimous consent that the pending quorum call be lifted. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. whitehouse: thank you, mr. president. i would like to add a few words this afternoon about the ongoing negotiations on the federal budget and on our rapidly approaching debt ceiling. i think we all agree that the situation we face is one of enormous importance and complexity. i believe that every responsible person also agrees that a failure to act would have awful repercussions that would jeopardize or worse our fragile and tentative economic recovery. so i think the responsible view is that it is imperative that we act. and it is also clear that to do
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so will require every side to make concessions. i rise this afternoon, however, because it's my strong belief that any agreement that we reach must be based on real savings and must not be made at the expense of our most vulnerable citizens. that is why i'm so concerned about reports that social security and medicare have been raised as possible sources of deficit reduction. cuts to social security and to medicare benefits should not be on the table. social security is not the cause of the deficit. never has been the cause of the deficit. and beneficiaries of social security should not be made to shoulder the burden of deficit reduction. social security is funded through the contributions of our nation's workers and businesses.
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it has an enormous surplus, and it is projected to be fully volume vent for another quarter -- fully solvent for another quarter century. so while i would agree with steps to strengthen social security, any changes should be considered independent of our effort to reduce the deficit, and we should not cut social security benefits. i helped cofound the rhode island -- the senate defending social security caucus for this very reason. the solvency of the social security program can be extended significantly just by applying payroll taxes to a greater portion of the earnings of millionaires and billionaires. what we've seen in this country is a huge shift of income going more and more to the uppermost economic reaches and less and
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less to the middle class. the middle class has actually lost income in the last decade. so the contributions to social security are lower because there's less income to draw it off of, and the income that is above the $106,000 social security cap, that's where the explosion of income has been. and they contribute not a nickel from that income to social security. so, there is a lot that we can do to support social security. what we should not do is give in to any of the calls to put our seniors' security at risk in the stock market by privatizing social security or increasing the retirement age so that a construction worker or a waitress who works on their feet all day long has to put in more years of service at that age,
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when their body might, frankly, not be up to it any longer; or to cut benefits through backdoor methods such as lowering the cost of living adjustment. i tell you, mr. president, the rhode island seniors i've heard from at the community dinners and the senior centers around the state i've visited are very concerned about what would happen if their benefits were cut. audrey from middle town told me that after her husband died, she had many expenses. but as she said, no income except for his social security check, which enabled me to go on living. simply but adequately, without being a burden on my sons and losing my dignity as well. two very important points audrey makes. one is that social security is not just a benefit to social security recipients. it's a benefit to the children of social security recipients,
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on whom their parents might otherwise be a burden. and it's an american value that senior citizens who have worked hard all their lives, who have played by the rules, who have built the america that we now enjoy should be able to not lose their dignity at the end of their life. that is a principle that is worth defending. ronald from cumberland, rhode island, has been on social security for a number of years. he wrote me to say, "it seems that it's always the people who need the help the most who get cut from the federal government. why is this? no social security cost-of-living adjustment for two years, yet prices for the basic needs still rise. in a country like the united states of america, this should not happen." these people, mr. president, who are living on social security income are not living high off the hog, and they should not be
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the targets of our cost-cutting zeal. the threat to the medicare program is just as real. earlier this year republicans over in the house of representatives passed a budget that would end the medicare program as we have come to know it for future generations. i can remember being at a senior center in north providence and a gentleman sitting at a table said to me, you know, i've helped build this country, i have fought in its wars, and i understand that the republican proposal would protect medicare for me, but i am not willing to let medicare for my children be thrown under the bus.
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that would make me feel awful. it simply isn't right for me to stay on it and stand for the program to be taken apart and dismembered for everybody else. that was a moving statement for me to hear, and we need to honor that. estimates suggest that the house republicans' proposal would end up forcing a typical 65-year-old senior to pay on average $12,500 each year in out-of-pocket expenses starting in 2022. that's more than double what a senior is estimated to pay than if the current system, if medicare stayed in place. in rhode island, the average senior only gets about $14,200
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per year from social security to begin with, so if you're going to ask people who now have have $14,200 a year who aren't getting cost of living adjustments by 2022 to pay pay $12,500 for medicare, that would be a massive exercise in poverty creation. and what medicare and social security have done is lifted the burden of poverty from america's seniors. i think sometimes we're blind to what life might be like without them when some of our colleagues so cavalierly suggest that we should do away with these programs, privatize them or turn them over to the insurance industry. the republican budget would also reopen the medicare prescription drug doughnut hole. we just went to a lot of effort
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to close that doughnut hole in the affordable care act. that doughnut hole will be gone in ten years, thanks to the affordable care act. the republicans all voted against the affordable care act, they all voted against closing the doughnut hole, and now in their budget on the other side, they want to unwind that part of the bill and take away the protections that we have provided for seniors in the doughnut hole. that would cost millions of dollars to seniors in rhode island, starting next year if it were put into law. that's not something off in the future. that is right now, thousands of rhode island seniors having to cough up millions of dollars because of this republican house budget plan. that's something that i think we need to defend against. that's just the wrong place to look. and it's especially the wrong place to look as we find our republican colleagues fighting
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so hard to protect tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires. i've given the speech repeatedly already, so i won't dwell on it now, but when our republican colleagues stand up and say we're against tax hikes, it's really important for americans to look behind the curtain and see who they are really defending, because i will tell you everybody in this chamber, republican and democrat alike, believes that ordinary american families earning ordinary levels of income should be exempt from any tax hikes. that is not even on the table. when our republican colleagues talk about defending against tax hikes, they are talking about defending the oil industry from having subsidies that they don't need and that taxpayers pay for taken away. they are talking about protecting the top 400 income
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earners in the country who on average pay federal taxes, actually pay it in. this isn't a theory, this isn't a rate. this is what they actually paid in, according to the i.r.s. 18.2%. these are people who made on average more than a quarter of a billion dollars, with a b, billion dollars with a b, in one year. and god bless them, what a wonderful thing it is to make more than a quarter of a billion dollars in one year. but they pay taxes at a lower rate than a truck driver in rhode island does on average. the guy who wakes up every morning and gets into his clothes and puts on his boots and gets in the truck and goes out there and works all day pays the same tax rate as the person earning over a quarter of a billion dollars. and they can talk about tax hikes until they are blue in the face, it won't take away the fact that that is the way it actually works in this country.
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and they are defending that and going after audrey and the folks on medicare in rhode island, on ronald from cumberland. that's just not right, and we need to argue about that and fight back. we can never overlook what medicare and social security have contributed to our nation's prosperity. it is not just the benefit for the medicare beneficiary, it is not just the benefit for the social security recipient. it is the freedom we all feel knowing that we will have a dignified old age, that we won't be at the mercy of wall street, that we won't be at the mercy of a private insurance company, that we will have the efficient and effective services that medicare and social security deliver. we can know that now and enjoy that. we have more freedom as americans now because we can make bolder choices in our lives
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knowing that we don't have to defend ourselves against that kind of poverty and that kind of misery in our old age. our children can make bolder choices in their lives knowing that they don't have to safeguard against a parent's illness ruining their own financial futures, ruining their family's financial futures. and imagine how often it must feel for a parent in that circumstance if in your old age you become grievously ill and the only resort you have is to essentially wipe out your children who feel a moral obligation to take care of your medical expenses and put themselves into poverty and misery as a result of your illness. what an awful, awful human tragedy that is for the people involved. and we don't experience that tragedy in america. we don't experience it because medicare and social security are
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there. the challenge before us, mr. president, is a formidable one, but i truly believe we can reach an agreement on the deficit and the debt ceiling without compromising the security and the well-being of our seniors. i believe that the democratic budget committee's proposed budget is a good model for how we can actually do it, and i look forward to continuing this discussion. it is not necessary in order to solve our immediate deficit problems and to get through this debt limit fight to take our seniors and put social security and medicare that they have relied on at risk. to take this country whose prosperity, social security and medicare do so much to support and knock that down with a tax on social security and medicare. it is not right, it is not necessary, and we should stand against it.
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mr. president, i thank you and i yield the floor. i would suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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mr. reid: i ask consent that the call of the quorum be terminated. the presiding officer: without objection. reid rioted first of all, i aexpress m.i.a.ppreciation to you presiding all of these hours this afternoon iflt want to take a minute and thank the pangs here. thats first -- this is the first time since 1974 this senate has been in session during the july 4th recess period. since 1974. these young pages have places to be with their families during this summer vacation period. they're juniors in high school. they have some plans i'm sure that we interfered with. but the work here that we've done this week, while there hasn't been a lot of time here on the floor, we have a lot of things going on all over washington.
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meetings at the white house, there's been meetings with the vice president, with the president, with the speaker and others working on this very important issue. and so when these eight pages in later years reflect back on the fact that they were here during one of the first -- the first time since 1974 that we were in session, they should reflect that we were here for important reasons. and if we do what is right, we'll be able to rein in this debt the country has and protect the most needy of our country. so i apologize for keeping them here. they shouldn't have had to be here this week but they stayed here because they have an obligation as pages to be here and they accepted that. they've kept this senate running smoothly and we need them. they're helpful to us. and they didn't have to be asked. each one of these eight pages
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volunteered. naomi biden, brian denino, clair carsting, marvin whistle, kyler harris and chafee duckers. so i appreciate very much their service and wish them the best in their educational endeavors in the years to come. mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to a period of morning business with senators allowed to speak for up to ten minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask consent the senate proceed to consideration of s. res. 229. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 229, recognizing the heroic efforts of firefighters to contain numerous wildfires that have affected thousands of people throughout the united states. the presiding officer: is there objection to proceeding to the measure? without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to, the motion to reconsider be laid on the table, there be intervening action on this matter or any further debate.
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that any statements relating to this matter be placed in the record at the appropriate place as if given. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i'm told there's a bill at the desk due for a second reading. -- first reading. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. no, the clerk will read the title of the bill for the first time. the clerk: s. 1340, a bill to cut, cap and balance the federal budget. mr. reid: i now ask for a second reading and in order to place the bill on the calendar under the provisions of rule 14, i also object to my own request. the presiding officer: objection having been heard, the bill will receive its second reading on the next legislative day. mr. reid reid: i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today, it adjourn until 2:00 p.m. on monday, july 11. following the prayer and pledge, the journal of proceedings be approved to date, the morning hour be deemed expired, the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day. following any leader remarks, the senate resume the motion to
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proceed to calendar number 93, s. 1323, a bill to express the sense of the senate on shared sacrifice in resolving the budget deficit postcloture under the previous order. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: mr. president, there will be a roll call vote on monday, on the 11th, at 5:30 on the motion to pret proceed tt s. 1323. if there's no further business to come before the senate, i ask that we adjourn under the previous order. the presiding officer: the senate stands adjourned until senate stands adjourned until
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voted to continue a non-binding measure saying those are earning more than a million dollars in year should contribute more to federal debt reduction. senators have been debating whether to bring up the bill for consideration that voted to limit the demotion to proceed 74 period 22 meaning the bill continues to move forward. before the vote democratic whip durbin explained the bill and tennessee republican lamar
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look-see increase blamed the opposition. this portion is about 15bin: minutes.tkoeupl p >> depending is s 1323 whenich s a sense of the senate resolution for those who follow the senate is not a law, will not be a law that is passed it is anely expression of sentiment by the senate on an issue and it can be it can summarized very quickly with tha side walls which reads it is aht sense of the senate in the redue agreement to reduce the budget e deficit should require those earning a million dollars oreare more per year make a meaningful contribution to the deficit-reduction effort to. why are we even talking about en this? i wouldn't everyone in americamake concede that everyone needs to g make a sacrifice if we are goint to make thryis country strong f? and those who can make a greatea sacrifice, those who are well
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off with an income of a millionc dollars or more each year should little more. me. why is it such a bold andcontrol the actions taken by congress over the last ten years we have found a sentiment, political sentiment primarily near the site of the all, not exclusively, primarily, whichhe says you cannot ask sacrifice ok the wealthiest people in america. i can tell you those are students of american historyf know that when we've had a this nation, thi particularly in the veryularly w existence being challenged people step up from every income level in america and said i'm willing to fight for thiss country. i'm willing to dryie for this ouuntry and sacrifice for this country so why would this be a matter to be debated on the a floor of the senate? because in fact the policies off
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the country over the last ten years said the wealthiest amongd us should be scared time and again from sacrifice when it itt nation. that is just plain wrong.e who wose fortunate enough to be well off to have a strong in s come to enjoy the blessings of y liberty, to live in what i feel is the greatest nation on earth should be prepared to give back. something. and i'ved spoken some and walk e life here in the senate we speno time with those who are well-off a reality i am not happy with but a reality and so many off them set for goodness sake why do we even hesitate to ask for a more taxes. i am prepared to pay those taxes because i feel blessed to havesi lived in this country so the idea of raising taxes on theng wealthiest among us won't changw their lifestyle of it but will help to solve some of our problems.ob youle see it as a model change f
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tax cuts that would put under president george w. bush people making a million dollars plus a year will get a 200,000-dollar tax breaks, 200,000-dollar tax break every year and in order tk pay for that tax break some tax other americans have to hav sacrifice. for example, it would mean thatt about 33 seniors will have to a pay $600 more for medicare undee one proposal when t uhe houseoun republican budget so we will generate enough money to give a tax break to a person who's a millionaire. 33 seniors paying 600 more a$600 year so that a millionaire can m get ail tax break. that's wrong.elieve it's justt plain wrong. i believe we need to ask for thn shared sacrifice and that's what this resolu senator mcconnell said this week it's about making washington make tough t it's about washington taking the hit this time. i
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people are taking the hit in america are not washington, they its low and middle-income curre americans taking the hit in the. current economy. almt still almost 14 trillionwo americans outrk of work and thoe working have seen the bulk ofgr income growth going to the highest income categories. we have the greatest incomeistoy disparity in the history of thee united states since theover thep over the past ten years the median family income as declinen by $2,500 the people working t hard going to work every single day making sacrifices forices fl further and further behind withe paycheck to paycheck and that is the reality of life for hard-working middle-income americans. so those of us that come to the floor and say spare them a fewne spare anyone from further taxation give them a helpingping hand, understand so they can so keep their head above water
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barely. so many americans live paycheckv to p paycheck. it's the only way they survive and that is a reality.m kencky my colleague in kentucky isn we right that in washington we neeh to make the tough choices, and c need to face them with aof sense of consensus and sent to the compromise. a it isn't going to work in aboutn an hour and 15 minutes i'm going i goi to lead to represent what senator reid and majority leader in a in a meeting witht president obama. n we will sit down in the cabinet room as i have been before and we are going to do in thise deficit i will say to the president and those assembled we have plenty of work left. it was six or seven months ago when the simpson commission froe the president's commission on the deficit gave us the print and secures a way to reach four and a half trillion dollars of reduction in a fair way put way. everything on the table. up. democrats, suck it up. entitlesn but the entitlement on the, , on the table, make sure that at the end of the day fees
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are still programs that serve the public, social security is d caill there making its promisedi payments. vers there medicare co health care of elderly americans and do it in a fiscally but responsible way, but don't run away from it or ignore the problems that you face andssion similarly the bulls and some commission said to those on the other side of the ogle, bereven. honest about revenue. we are facing the lowest federan revenue stagainst our grossductt domestic product that we haven 0 seen in 60 years is it any wondr wonder we are in deficit? domesc 15% of our domestic product comes to the federal government the 10%r we spent spend. 25 %. .. d.o bring the oh, critics will say, you can't raise taxes in the midst of recession. well, we need to be careful, i agree. raising taxes in the wrong places could hurt our recovery. here are some places where it
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won't hurt, as this resolution says, at the highest income categories. these americans can afford to pay a little more. they certainly don't need a tax break. secondly, take a look at the tax code. up to $1.2 trillion a year in tax spending, tax earmarks, credits and deductions that the special interest lobbyists put in the tax code. many of them are absolutely indefensible, and we can't afford them anymore. if we're asking sacrifice across the board from america, we should ask sacrifice for those who are benefiting from these tax loopholes and tax benefits. tax loopholes and tax benefits. >> we can do that. in fact, we maybe able to do it if we foul bowles-simpson and at the same time, reduce the imaginal tax rates for all americans. remember, mr. president, 70% of americans do not itemize. which means they do not take advantage of the tax code where they have refundament tax
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credit. these people are not using the tax code. those who use it are in high income tax categories. warren buffett had a great quote. which we should remember. said is november 26 in 2006. there's class warfare all right. it's my class, the rich that's, that's making war, and we're winning. warren buffett because of his business and life hits the nail on the head. he said to me and many others it is unconscionable using our tax code today, he, warren buffett theys a lower marginal tax rate than the secretaries in his office. that is wrong. why should a hard working person in a business at a lower level pay a higher marginal tax rate than the person owning the
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business. that's why the tax code is wrong. that's where we can change it, save money, use it to reduce the definite, and reduce marginal income tax rates. that's what this resolution is all about. it is nothing sort of amazing that we're debating a question of whether those who make $1 million or more each year should really pony up and contribute more when it comes to deficit reduction. mr. president, the newspapers this morning talk about what maybe included in any final agreement. i don't know what will be included. i hope there is an agreement. but one thing i want to make sure, i just left a meeting with people who do forecasting. standard, poors, moody's, pitch, and the like. they talk about what is going to happen if we don't extent the debt ceiling. let me lay my cards on the table. it's a political vote. those not in the president's party don't vote for it.
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why should you? years gone by, there's tommies didn't vote for it. in all honestly, i knew in the back of my mind it was doing to pass. but here's the reality, if we reach a stalemate on the debt ceiling now because the president's party doesn't control the congress, certainly not the house, barely in the senate, if we don't extent the debt ceiling, what's going is happen is obviously. the united states is going to be called in question. that's never happened. we have never in our history failed to extent the debt ceiling and say we stand behind the debts and will good. if there's any question about that, you know what happens. the same thing that happens when you default on the home mortgage. it becomes increasingly difficult to ever get another mortgage. if you do, you face higher interest rates than ever. that's what america will face. so these people from the rating agencies said it'll be disastrous if you allow the debt ceiling not to be extended on
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august 2nd. that is the reality of the world that we live in. so i would say as we go into the important and difficult negotiations, as we move towards the moment when we are going to have, i hope, an agreement, let's make it very clear to the world, the united states understands it's obligations, will pay it's debts, and that we don't -- won't face the dire consequences of the opposite being true. that's the reality of what we face today. i will say one last thing here before i yield the floor. as we structure this deficit, rescue or deficit project, let's remember two things that are essential. there are vulnerable people in the united states of america who through no fault of their own struggle each day to live. some of them suffer from physical and mental disabilities. some of them have been poor their entire lives and come from poor families and have a difficult time and limited education. some of them are elderly in nursing homes.
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these people, the most vulnerable among us, need a helping hang. we have never failed to do that in modern times. we shouldn't in this time of trouble, and time of deficit. we can keep our word to the poor among us that we are going to stand by them. because we are caring people. we can do it by making sure that the medicaid program which provides health insurance for 1/3 of the children in america, which covers more than 40% of the medical cost of children, pardon me, covers the medical cost of birth of more than 40% of the children in america and literally provides for millions of seniors to be able to stay in nursing homes and in senior settings so that they can do so. these are the things that we need to take care of in the midst of that deficit reduction. i see my colleague from tennessee on the republican side come to the floor. it's time available. i didn't know if anyone was coming.
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i'm going to yield the floor. i'm wrapping up. i thank my senator, colleague from tennessee. i will wrap up to say we can take care to make sure the safety net is protected, to make sure as well that we address all levels of spending in our government. every one of them. to make certain that whether it's the defense budget or the budget for programs not related to defense, whether it's entitlement programs, awful these need to be carefully, carefully scrutinized. we can cut spending in a responsible bipartisan way and show that we can bring our deficit down, strengthen this economy, and i think in the process, if we do it on a bipartisan basis, we're going to launch an economic recoverly that emerges in the benefit of all of us. if we don't, i don't know what will take the fall for it. no one does. the best thing we can do is to ignore the political aspect and deal with the reality of the challenge that we face. mr. president, i yield the floor. >> mr. president, senator from
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tennessee is recognized. >> i would -- i appreciate what the senator from illinois said. i would congratulate him. not necessarily for the specifics of what he just said, but for his general demeanor and attitude throughout the entire discussion about the deficit and the debt. he's been one of those senators, some on both sides of the aisle who have made difficult choicing and decisions. at a time when washington is borrowing 40 cents of every dollar that we spend. we have a problem. we have to look at the entire fiscal condition in order to solve the problem. the people of the country expect us to do that. senator durbin has by his willingness to make some hard decisions set a good example for all of us in the united states senate. my hope is today that the meeting that the president has with our congressional leaders of both sides succeeds. because if they succeed, our
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country succeeds. the country expects us to do that. i hope we think big and swing for the fences and get a result and bring it back to us and let us consider it and hopefully enact it and get on to other things. the debt is a major long term problem. not just for our grandchildren, but for us today. we have a bigger issue facing us. that is the fact that we've had persistent unemployment and an economy that's not growing and that's hurting too many people. the sooner that we swing for the fences and get a result and get our debt under control and deal with it in a bipartisan way, better for the country and the quicker we'll be able to get on to the larger question of jobs. of course, economist have made it clear to us getting the debt under control has a lot to do with jobs. that when our total debt is as high as it is today, nearly 100% of the gross domestic product,
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that probably costs us a million jobs a year. we can't solve all of that in one day, or one month. but we can take a big step in the right direction. that's really what our country men and women want us to do. i'm glad that i got to hear part of the senators speech. i'm glad i have a chance to commend him for this leadership on the vexing and important problem that we need to deal with. >> i thank the senator. i yield the floor. >> u.s. senate today voted to continue moving forward with a nonbinding measure saying those earning more than $1 million should contribute more to federal debt reduction. they passed the motion to limit the debate, 74-22. after the vote, senate democratic leader harry reid announced no more votes in the senate. arizona republican said the senate gave up a week long 4th of july recess to work on debt
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ceiling and isn't accomplishing anything. we begin with kay hutchinson who opposes any tax relief. >> senate hutchinson, i was wondering the view that we've been terribly over worked this week. i understand that we canceled our 4th of july recess in order to get back here and get to work and do the people's business. is it correct that was the second vote that we have taken. one was being instruction of the sergeant in arms and this one another highly controversial issue that was taken up. so i guess my question, senator from texas, has this week been a worthwhile expenditure of the taxpayers dollar? >> well, i would respond to the distinguishes senator from arizona that the resolution that
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was just passed was to go to a sense of the senate resolution which, of course, has no force of law. and it is, indeed, our second vote this week. i will say that -- there's one thing on the minds of the people today. one thing on the minds of the people of america today and it is what on earth -- >> that is not important. >> senator is correct. the senate will come to order. the senate will come to order. the chair asks senator to please take conversations off of the floor. senator from texas is recognized. >> americans are saying what on earth is congress doing? what on earth is the president doing? what are they doing the address the looming debt crisis. we were called back in not to recess, but to do something
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meaningful. when i saw the senator from arizona on the floor, he was ready to talk about our international situation and the commitments that we are making. certainly many people said, no, wait a minute. we've got a debt crisis and we can't wait until august 2nd to fulfill it. so i would just respond to the senator from arizona and say when does the -- when do the american people get the answer that they deserve? which is congress and the presidents are working together and we are being productive and we have a budget resolution on the floor and we are debating it and we are talking about our differences on taxes and spending. you know, i don't think we can tax our way out of a recession. i don't think we can tax our way out of the budget deficits. i would just ask the senator
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from arizona if he thinks that we can make meaningful progress staying in session and debating. and, if in fact that maybe an option in the future. >> i see the distinguished majority leader waiting. i will make my comments brief. i know his agenda is very busy. i would just say that -- to my friend from texas and i understand a lot of the inner mechanisms and hidden workings going on behind the scenes. when i go back and tell my constituents that we were con selled a week of recess and we had two votes, one to instruct the sergeant at arms and the other since the senate resolution, i would have liked to have taken up other business. that was rejected by members on this side because they wanted to focus on the deficit. if we are focusing on that, maybe we should have taken up some issues that directly
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affected deficits. such as ethanol subsidies, such as some of the other tax breaks and loopholes and other issues that surround the whole bankruptcy of this country. so i see the majority leader is there waiting. so i will yield to my friend from texas. >> i would just ask unanimous consent following the majority leader, i regain the floor. >> majority leader is recognized. >> and senator from texas will have a -- just a brief comment. i've known my friend, the senior senator from arizona, since 1982. when we were both elected to congress. and his record of public service speaks for itself. but i would say to him and to everyone within the sound of my voice, we didn't vote on libya, an important resolution that had
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been worked on so hard by the distinguished senator from arizona. and the chairman of the foreign relations committee, because i would told we wouldn't get any votes from republicans because they wanted to focus on the deficit. my friend also recognizes, as he said, there's work going on beyond -- behind the scenes. that's true. there's been a lot of work this week that took place as a result of our being here that would not have taken place but for the fact that we are in session. now we know a lot of the work we accomplish here is not with votes. one reason we're not having a lot of votes in recent months is because we can't get things on the floor. we were stopped from my republican friends. there's meetings going obvious -- going on with the white house and speaker, multitude of meetings there. meetings going on between members of the senate, and democrats and republicans in the house of representatives. i would say to everyone here, it's good we were in session this week.
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i haven't heard a single person who is not in congress complain about our being here. it's important that we are here. and as a result of that, we've been able to move down the road much further on this problem that is we have with the debt than we would have, had we not been in session. there's all kinds of meetings going on around down, dealing with how we do this. we had a meeting today. starting at 9:00. we had head of the chamber commerce. we had people from moody's financial services. they were there to tell us what they are doing to focus on republicans being able to help us get through this problem dealing with the debt. we have to do something about the staggering debt that faces us. what the resolution we voted on earlier today is all about is making sure there's equal sacrifice in the country. that is what we know they have to make cuts. we also recognize we need to do something about it. that's what's going on. what we do here in the senate,
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every week, isn't like solving a math problem. there's no perception. that's the way the founding fathers set up the great government of ours. so we are going to continue to work in the next four weeks of this work period to solve some of the nation's problems. number one on the list is doing something about the staggering debt. >> mr. president. >> senator from texas is recognized. >> mr. president, i appreciate what the majority leader has said. there is a lot going on. and there's the beginning, perhaps, of coming together. hopefully with the president and the leadership of the house and the senate. and i just hope that we can accomplish why it is that there is such a divide on how we accomplish the issue of raising the debt ceiling with real
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performs that will assure that we will not have to raise the debt ceiling again, that we will cut deficits so that the debt will also be cut in this country. we cannot sustain the level of debt that we have done. it is the highest that we have ever had in the history of this country. and, mr. president, let's face it. we have two basic problems here. we have this looming $14 trillion debt that is about to hit the ceiling. and we have to raise the ceiling. now it would be irresponsible to do that without significant reforms that will assure we're not going to hit it again. but the second problem is we have 9.1% unemployment. so it's not like we are in a vacuum here. and we can just start taxing our small businesses.
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when small business has already had the looming hit of the health care plan that was passed. that is going to cost every business in this country significant increases in their cost of doing business. so when people are out there saying, well, why is unemployment still so high? why is hiring lagging? i think it is because businesses are trying to prepare for this big hit that they are going to get in 2014 when the obama health care plan takes full account and they are trying to figure out are they going to pay more for insurance or are they going to take the fines and pay fines for every employee who doesn't have insurance which is
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going to cause chaos in the country. they are trying to decide. on top of that, people on the other side of the aisle in washington, d.c. people talking about increasing taxes. and the president keeps talking about increasing taxes. and so no wonder our employees -- employers are not saying let's just open the flood gates and bring people back to work. because they don't know what to expect. we must generate economic growth, not stifle it. we need businesses to feel confident in the future that they are going to be able to make a profit on top of all of the added costs of new taxes and a health care reform that is going to hit business the hardest. so we don't have a tax problem in this country.
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we're not being taxed too little. this government is spending too much. that's the problem we're facing right now. that's why we have a $14 trillion debt. we have a $1.6 trillion shortfall between spending and revenue. so, you know, i'm reminded of what ronald reagan once again. we don't have $1 trillion because we haven't taxed enough. we have $1 trillion because we spend time much. let's look at the defending side of the equation. we can't continue business at usual in washington. and fix this problem. when president obama was sworn into office, the national debt was $10.6 trillion. it was too much then. i think we all agree. now it's $14.3 trillion.
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we are weeks away from officially hitting that $14.3 trillion debt ceiling. now we have had a monumental edition to the unprecedented number of spending dollars that was the stimulus that passed in february of 2009. today the president's council of economic advisors has said that $2.4. jobs created at a cost of $666 billion. that's about 3/4 of the stimulus that is a cost to taxpayers of $278,000 per job. now, mr. president, that's just
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not responsible. this is the kind of spending that we cannot continue in this country. you know, i think they say they want to increase taxes and i hear the president say we must increase taxes on the oil companies. increase taxes on corporate jets. well, you know, i think if we are fair and across the board and we tax all companies like we tax every business, sure. i think let's even the playing field. if we are going to take away the business deductions that every business gets in this country. then sure. let's take it from every business. including oil. but it's not going to help the deficit because it's not enough to help the deficit. they say they want to increase taxes in order to reduce the deficit. but what they really want is to increase taxes to permanently
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increase spending. so that the big government that we have seen grow in the last two years, two and a half years will be permanent. that's why they want to increase taxes. so, mr. president, i say there's a way to fix this. first of all, we could pass a balanced budget amendment. a balanced budget amendment to the u.s. constitution would put us on a budget that we would have to meet like most states in this nation and every business and every family. we would set the limits. i believe the appropriate limit would be that total federal expenditures would be limited to 18% of the gross domestic product. then congress would also have to have caps on spending. 18% of gross domestic product.
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now this would be a spending reform that we could adopt that i believe the states would also agree to ratify that would give us a trajectory that would eliminate this deficit and the debt in this country. we would be on a fiscally responsible path. second, if we're going to do this, we've got to look at entitlements. now that's the reality. that is the reality. we have a nearly bankrupt entitlement system that is ongoing, regardless of what the revenue comes in is. the debt limit and the ongoing deficit reduction negotiations need to put entitlement reform on the table. until yesterday, they had refused to do it. but now it seems that perhaps some entitlement reform might be
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on the table. for instance, one that i have introdoused a bill to correct is the social security system. social security will account for 1/5 of all federal spending this year. 1/5. the time for reform is now. and we can do it in a reasonable way. the amount of social security benefits being paid out exceeds the revenue that social security payroll is collecting and we're starting to drawdown on the social security reserves. when the reserves run out, in 2036, social security will only be able to pay out 70% of the benefits to current and future retirees. that is the law today. it would be force a 23% cut in benefits. that's the law today.
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the social security board of trustees reported earlier this year that one way to shore up social security assets is to immediately and permanently increase the combined payroll tax on employees and employers from 12.4 to 14.5%. in other words, increase payroll taxes by 1/6 during our jobless economic nonrecovery. i don't think that's really feasible. the trustees also noted that the shortfall would be eliminated by an immediate and permanent 13.8% cut in core benefits. that retirees are getting right now. an immediate $150 per month cut in every social security benefit check right now. that was what the social security trustees suggested was a possibly.
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now that is something i think we would unanimously in this united states senate reject. no one is going to cut benefits $150 right now per month. nobody. nobody would do it. so if we are going to address this, i have proposed a plan. senator kyl and i introduced senate bill 1213, the defend and save social security act. first, every one knows we are living longer than when the social security act passed. we have a higher quality of life. people want to work longer in most areas. so why not gradually raise the retirement age without impacting those who are about to retire? understand my bill, anyone who is 58 years of age or older will
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see no change. for everyone else, starting in 2016, the normal and early retirement age would increase by three months a year. so the normal retirement age would reach 67 by 2019, 68 by 2023, and 69 at 2027. and it stops there. early retirement would be gradually three months a year increase to 63 by 2019 and 64 by 2023, and it would stop. secondly, currently social security recipienting receive an annual cost of living adjust adjustment. a cola. it would be come putted as it is in current law, reduced one percent.
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so the average rate of inflation in c.o.l.a. has been 2.5 -- 2.2%, excuse me, every year of an increase. so if we have a 2.2% rate of inflation c.o.l.a., it would be a 1.2% increase in social security benefits. so what i'm saying is that a 1% increase in the c.o.l.a. is just a 1% increase in the -- 1% decrease in the increase. so that you would have the gradual raising of the age that would be much more in line with our table and the reality today where people are living much longer and you would also have slight decrease in the increase in social security benefits according to inflation.
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if we have ramped inflation, then you would have the c.o.l.a., just 1% less. 2.2% inflation, then you'd get a 1.2% c.o. l.a. it closes the gap. it doesn't raise taxes on anyone. and it doesn't cut a core and doesn't hurt anyone. that's the way to fix social security. what would it do for our deficit? here's what it would do. it would achieve a $416 billion reduction over the next ten years and a $7.2 trillion savings by 2085. that means we're on the track.
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that means in amendment years, social security will be solid and secure with tax increase on anyone and without a cut in core benefits to anyone and no one who is 58 years of age or older will have any adjustment whatsoever. so in the age. whatsoever. i've gone out and said here's a proposal. they have proposed a limit and cap on spending that is responsible. other colleagues, senator lee, senator paul, have suggested and senator have suggested over ways to cut spending across the board just a level goal.
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they are cutting spending at reasonable levels. many republicans are offering ways to cut back. my colleague senator cornyn from texas, and a balanced budget amendment. there are proposals there that are responsible ways to deal with the deficit that include entitlements and discretionary spending both. it is time, mr. president, for the president of the united states to sit down at the table and understand that tax increase for kind of a photo op are not going to fill the void. the public relations of cutting back on corporate benefits,
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whatever they are, i don't know what they are. don't have one. i think we probably all agree. if you get afford a corporate jet or private jet, you know, fine. whatever the president wants to do. we'll do it. and it will do nothing to help the deficit. why don't we do the meaningful thing, which is make meaningful cuts in discretionary spending, let's attack what everybody knows is the case, and that is social security is going bankrupt as we speak. and if congress and the president will speak responsibly about it. we can put that on a glide path that is within the reasonable table estimate. very gradually increase.
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starting in 2013, ending at 2027. that's gradual. we can't procrastinate. we can't wait. we can't hope the crisis will pass. and we cannot delay the inevitable. this is the united states senate. we were elected to make the tough choices. it is time for us to do it. thank you, i yield the floor. >> now available, c-span's discretional directionally. complete guide, inside new and returning house and senate members with contact information, including twitter addresses, district maps, and committee assignments, and information on the white house, supreme court justices and governors. order online at
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>> it used to be we didn't release transcript of arguments. now we release them within a half hour. used to be the audio recordings were released at the end of the term. now they are released at the end of every week. we are moving in a particular direction. cameras spent all sorts of challenges that the other areas
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don't. >> watch chief justice. also american history tv and vignettes online at >> two house subcommittees today held a joint hearing. they have discussed for four years. the issue include famine, piracy -- this hearing is an hour and 15 minutes. >> subcommittee will come to order. good afternoon, everyone. we are holding today's hearing for the purpose of examining u.s. policy regarding the failed state of somalia, the possibly of recognizing breakaway areas and the continuing problem of
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somali piracy around which the obama administration has built a program. the instability has encouraged other criminal activity beyond the borders, endangering the entire horn. somali heads the annual list of failed states in the current issue of foreign policy magazine. this eastern african country is held for the past four years. sudan, chad, zimbabwe, and the democratic republic of congo has experienced horrific conditions. none of them could over take somalia at the top of the list. since the fall of presidency, in 1991, the united states has been involved in addressing the consequences of somalia, have no function in government that effectively rules the entire country. this lax of governance has resulted in somalia being engaged in a chaotic civil war.
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humanitarian, political insecurity conditions continue to deteriorate. in the past two years, 22,000 civilians have killed. 1.1 million people displaced and 465,000 have fled to neighboring countries. somalia is currently experiencing what is considered the worst drought in the horn of africa. as a result, continuing conflict linborgh con flick will testify today that 2.8 five million somalis are in need of humanitarian aid. rueben rugetti will testify that somali has comprised the largest refugee population in africa.
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that represents more than 750,000 people in the greater horn of africa region. 120,000 of whom have arrived in refugee camps since january. in 2003, young leaders of al idiahab formed al shabaab. they wanted to establish a greater somalia. they have increasingly controlled territory in somalia, and by late 2008, the transitional, federal government, or tfg, has lost control of most of south central somalia to insurgent groups. u.s. officials are concerned that al qaeda and it's allies in east africa continued to pose serious threats. al qaeda posed a direct threat.
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while al shabaab focus more on attacks on the citizens and in somalia. it has threatened to attack neighboring countries, including ethiopia and kenya. for far too long, somalia has been a cancer on the horn of africa. criminals not only plagued surrounding countries, and have been involved in drug and human trafficking. however, the most serious involvement in international criminal activity is by far is piracy. pirates attack in the waters off of somalia and in the horn of africa, including those on u.s. flag vessels have brought reviewed attention to the long standing problem of maritime piracy. according to the bureau, at least 219 attacks occurred in the region in 2010 with 49 successful hijacking.
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the pirates have attacked ships, along somalia's eastern coastline and outward. using tactics, the pirates now operate as far east as the malbabe and as far south as the most sam beak channel. ransom is now up to $5 million. two years ago. hillary clinton announced a plan to combat piracy. coordination with the international contact group, encouragement between government and shipping companies in defending vests.
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-- vessels. yet the threat is not combined to the waters. in recent years, dozens of young somalias, many of them from the indianapolis area have left the united states to return to fights with al shabaab. on august 5th, 2010, more than a dozen somali-americans were arrested. 14 people, being charge the with providing support for al shabaab. two indictmented in minnesota stated that two citizens raised fund, including 12 money transfers in 2008 and 2009. the danger to america posed by al shabaab and the supporters in the country continued to be very serious. the nomination hearing to become secretary of defense last month, cia director leon panetta noted that al shabaab's quote is on
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the rise. mr. panetta expressed concern as the leadership in pakistan comes under pressure, it is not able to be fined a safe haven. since the fall in 1991, somalia both now areas of somalia have been the only areas of effective governance. they seek international recognition, but others do not. while they recognize obvious support the eventually integration into greater somalia requires ongoing support. today's hearing offers a valuable opportunity to examine u.s. policy on a variety of issues involving somalia. i'd like to now turn to ranking member, mr. payne, for any comments he might have. >> thank you very.
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let me thank you for calling the very important joint hearing on assessing the consequences of the failed state of somalia. and it's a pleasure to see my good friend, mr. royce back who chaired the subcommittee at some point in the past and has maintained a strong interest as have congressman smith. and so it's a pleasure to be here at this very important hearing. unfortunately, i will have to leave a few minutes before ii. -- 2:00. i've been invited to be a part of the presidential delegation that will celebrate the new state of south sudan and must leave in a hour or so to juba to be a part of that great achievement. but i will stay as long as i can. i certainly look forward to your
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insights and challenges facing somalia. and the united states and the root causes of these challenges. let me also say that i really commend our witnesses, all of whom have extinguished backgrounds with dealing with somalia and other difficult places in the world. especially the honorable donald mota who has spent so much time in the area and has been responsible for so many achievements that we've seen in the very troubled parts of the world where he has served. i've had a long history of engagement with somalia. my most recent trip in april of 2009 gained international
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attention because of the motar attack on my plane as i left. but that was not my first visit. nor was it the first attack on a plane that i was boarding. the first happening in early 1992. when i attended and the plane was fired on as we were and getting ready to leave. but it was not airborne. in 2009. of course, my good luck, they didn't shoot straight. therefore, i'm here to give testimony. i first traveled in the summer of 1993. just following the killing of
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the pakistani peace keepers. that was two years after the ruling was overturned and the country fell into a state of lawlessness and warfare. you may recall the united states and other u.n.-related countries went to see that the children could get the food that was being sent to somalia. but the distribution was being prevented by the war lords. there was food there, but children were dying because the war lords would not allow the food to be distributed. so my first trip was then. and i returned back again and late '93 because i from the state of new jersey, we have a large number of pharmaceutical corporations and i asked them if
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they would participate in a pharmaceutical drive that unicef co-sponsored with me to provide medications for children to help in the situation since the children were suffering so much. and we had the 100% cooperation from new jersey pharmaceuticals to provide the medications. and two years ago, it was noted by some of the participates that remembers the pharmaceutical drive that brought millions of dollars donated products to the children of somalia.
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after leaving on my first trip in '93, i then went to one the somali refugee camps in kenya. the camp was larger than we talk about today, which exists in kenya. which i have also visited several times, most recently a year or so ago. the refugee situation of somalis throughout the region has always been a very serious question and problem for the surrounding countries. the people continue to suffer in these rough conditions. but the spirit of the somali people have always impressed me. throughout the toughest times, somalis remain hopeful and find ways to run a business and make the best of the situation and other ways. and i greatly admire their fortitude and stick to itness
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and really creativeness, creating a new industry that we know about. four years ago, actually back in '90 -- four years following my '93 trip, i went to the city for the first time. i met with the former president of somaliland and we met with the current president, most recently a year ago in nairobi before the elections and speaking by phone to him recently. i was the resolution which called on the united states and give status at the united states and recognize their accomplishments as you know, as
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you know, mogadishu and somali were all controlled by different colonial powers. i think the reason that some have succeeded, for example, somaliland, is because some colonials powers gave more to the locals and provided them with the opportunity to govern. whereas mogadishu it was limited. this is the only resolution to be introduced in congress that focused on in two decades at that time. i also met with president of putinland, i encourage them to ban today for the future of somali. finally i traveled in 2009 after
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all of the evil that had occurred during the ethiopia invasion. i met with the president, ministers, journalist, and a prominent coalition of women organizations who were very, very active at that time. these were things that we did not hear about. but that was going on inspite of the violence. as a matter of fact, i was there the day following the u.s. navy s.e.a.l.s taking down three somali pirates, and, of course, i was asked at a press conference by al jazeer was there. i made it clear that piracy is illegal. the united states would not tolerate the intrusion of the
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u.s. ship, and i supported president obama and the navy s.e.a.l.s in the taking down of the three somali pirates. that may have something to do with al shabaab taking a shot at my plane when i left. in 2009, i introduced a resolution calling for the recognition of the transition of federal government, tfg, but the united states. greater involvement, greater engagement on the political and humanitarian, and the presence in mogadishu one continues improve. despite recent shakeups, there are glimmers of hope. last month, president and speaker of parliament agreed to hold elections by august 20th 2012. it was also decided that a new prime minister would be appoint
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ed. the tfg is planning a conversation in mogadishu sponsored by the u.n. to bring together all of the stakeholders. it is unclear whether somali land officials will attend. the president must be given support as he attempts to increase dialogue, promote stability, and fight off al shabaab. more than 22,000 civilians over the last several years have been attacked. an estimated 1.1 million as this may 1.1 million people in 76,000 have fleed neighbors countries. many people rightly focused on the aspects of piracy. i spoke with president clinton while traveling with her. she met with the president and expressed the views that the piracy was a symptom and not the
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cause of somalia's problem. we need to work on the strategy in october to do strategy which we will hear about. it's something that needs to be discussed more. and just in conclusion, while the state department has stated that it will not recognize somaliland, the state has commended the progress and stability both much somaliland and putinland and what they have achieved. the broadens of inclusion will allow a more effective dialogue. we have question that is we will be asking. the panelist here. but in the deference of time, i will just simply conclusion that we do have a problem with the -- 1/4 of the country population is refugee or displaced. 100,000 have fled to neighboring countries.
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22,000 did a few weeks ago because of the flooding. with that, i yield back and balance my time. >> thank you. i'd like to yield to co-chairman of this hearing. >> thank you. thank you, mr. chairman. i too held the gavel and the effort. i just wanted to say in working with don payne in that capacity over those years, his willingness to speak out was always very impressive. i know he has to leave at some time today to speak out in terms of the situation of south sudan at a meeting there. but we were actually in a codel, on a codel in africa when we had the word don had a press conference and minutes later his plane was motars when he was flying out of town. it was because don payne was willing and will speak out because we have light on the issues, and you, mr. chairman.
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it's an issue, the situation in somali, that is not only a humanitarian crisis, it is also, frankly, a national security threat. that's the aspect of it. i chair the subcommittee. this is the aspect of it. that the state department has been talking to us about. pend the defense department. and something that we're going to look at today. because somali was a failed state for an offerly long period of time. nowhere are the consequences of somali more evidence than when it comes to international terrorism. and the threat from al shabaab which is as we designate it a foreign terrorists organization. and in the past few years, the shabaab threat, of course, has grown dramatically to the u.s. :
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beyond africa a european plot was recently uncovered.
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was in the works and was uncovered so links between al-shabaab and al qaeda it the arabian peninsula, the most active of all of the al qaeda franchises are becoming clearer and clearer to us in the united states. they are communicating more about operations, working together on training, working together on tactics. the bomb making capability that al qaeda has and the expertise is being combined with al-shabaab's recruits and fees' frequently have western passports. many of them have u.s. passports. this is quite a deadly combination and that's why last month then cia director called the threat to the u.s. homeland in his words significant and on the rise. u.s. forces have gone on the offensive of course targeting the leaders from the sky, but we
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should have a diplomatic attack as well and that is where i would like to focus my attention here. we should target al-shabaab's outside support. the government of the support for al-shabaab is well documented. assistant secretary for african affairs johnny carson testified to congress about the supply of weapons. two terrorists inside somalia. the u.n. security council acting at the urging of african neighbors passed sanctions against demanding that the country and i'm going to read from the sanctions sees army sees army and equipping al-shabaab under pressure it's time to tackle its state sponsors, states supporters
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before this menace reaches the united states. we must have an honest recognition of the destructive role eritrea is playing in the region and designate it as a state sponsor of terrorism. i yield back mr. chairman. >> i am to stand mr. connolly has to leaves but i would yield one minute to my friend. >> thank you mr. payne for holding this hearing. picking up support of where mr. rice left off, the instability that has long dominated somalia as a failed state has spillover effects that certainly affect the united states national security, shaping the shipping lanes of the gulf of aden, and i think of deep concern. i am particularly interested in the hearing of the views of the panelist on the piracy aspect of this instability. there are lots of aspects, but
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there are pirates who are more emboldened. it's a cash business. they are more successful in ransom in the ships. that is a critical shipping lane that simply has to be secured and an american history going back to thomas jefferson. we've always had an interest in that part of the world putting an end to piracy. here we are over 200 years later dealing with something similar so i will be interested in hearing what you think our options are or should be and what steps we should take to further enhance capability to the tour in that part of the world. >> thank you. >> very briefly, mr. chair, somalia continues to receive a reading of a country, our country must continue to remain active and expand our diplomatic commitment to restore somalia and once again i appreciate the leadership in this area. >> i'd like to introduce our distinguished panel begin with
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ambassador donald. the investor is no stranger to the subcommittee having testified before us in the hearing on the democratic republic of congo. he served since 2009 as principal assistant as the bureau of african affairs, department of state. his prior assignments included serving as u.s. ambassador to ethiopia from november 2006 to july of 2009 and deputy secretary of state in the washington affairs. we then hear from nancy who is the assistant administrator of the year for democracy conflict and humanitarian assistance at usaid. she spent 14 years as president of mercy corps where she focused on international relief in the development during her time with our c-corp. nancy also served as a number of positions among nongovernmental organizations and advisory capacity to government agencies where she worked on issues related to foreign relations and
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assistance we have full biographies made part of the record because you were accomplished people and we will then hear from dr. reubin currently serving as deputy assistant secretary of state for the bureau population refugees and migration and states and in this capacity supervises the u.s. refugee programs in africa manages the mentor and diplomacy for international partners and the development of the migration policy. previously worked on the human rights watch and has been active in active-duty u.s. naval officer. recently turned from east africa where he worked on the ground with refugees and we will be returning shortly to that area. the ambassador, please proceed. >> thank you chairman payne and members of this committee. i want to say especially thank you very much to the chairman and to you all for holding this important hearing and your kind words for us.
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the solutions arn could either easy or one-dimensional. signs of progress and improvement to fortify our outlook and encourage u.s. efforts. most recently significantly smaller national security forces under the control of the transitional federal government calcutta terrorists when the car he was then ran a check point in mogadishu. his test brings a sense of relief to the families of the 1998 bombings and my robie and in october 2010 psychiatry carson announced the dual track approach to somalia after careful consultation and review and also i think to the advice in this committee and others the approach to somalia taking into consideration somalia past and present house well as challenges and strengths we continue to support the peace process the transitional federal government
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its national security forces and the african union mission to somalia. however, we recognize there are large pockets of stability that have narrow u.s. engagement and broaden the outreach to improve greater engagement with somalia and regional and local al-shabaab groups throughout south and central somalia. we recognize the need to encourage grassroots support for stability in somalia and are reaching out to be a desperate communities and civil societies to foster dialogue and peaceful reconciliation. in addition we continue to do everything we can to provide urgently needed humanitarian assistance. thanks to the dedication and sacrifice of amazon, the forces, the al-shabaab can no longer claim control of mogadishu or free to operate a significant portion of the city. since 2007, the united states has supported this development by obligating approximately $258 million of support to the
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amazon training, logistical needs as well as approximately $85 million to support and build the capacity of the forces. over the next year we will support new troop contingents us was that he fg need for training, equipping and logistical support. we will continue to focus on supporting the political progress over the course of the next year. after five months of political insight related to the tfg tenure coming to a close in august of 2011, the president and speaker of parliament hosam cosigned on june 90 and 3 dedicated themselves to finding an end to the transition period that had been in place since the president and the u.n. special ret witness the agreement with him serving as the guarantor. under the agreement that t. sg recommitted itself to the djibouti peace process and the
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traditional federal charter to concrete a set of transitional tasks to be monitored by the international community. to the parliament and holding elections for the president and speaker by august, 2012. under the court, the tfg come formed and appointed to the prime minister muhammad ali on july 28. the court is assigned at 80 devotee leadership realizes that neither the somali people are the international community of the patients to continue to accept political insight that serves no purpose other than maintaining access to the office and the influence for certain individuals. we and our international partners under the accord will be pushing for timeliness, benchmarks over the next year and including the completion of national constitution, revenue transparency and accountability, meaningful engagement with
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portland and iswj and other stakeholders. we have a diplomatic outreach with these regional authorities and parkhurst and the truffle to the times. we advocate for a presentation from the region and conferences and other events such as the you encounter piracy focus mechanisms and as the process and the u.n. confrontation in april which focused on ending the transition and the joint security committee. the interaction between the u.s. and the interlocutors as critical as we work to advance peace and security throughout somalia we are reviewing how to adopt our travel policy to more robust -- brusquely execute our approach to the security of u.s. personnel as the paramount importance when considering travel inside of somalia. the current budget environment will have an impact on our
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ability to affect positive changes in somalia in the midterm. the support to the amazon to contingents, deployment and needs of the fledgling tnt will continue for some time. on the development and peacebuilding side in 2011 somalia received approximately $25 million in the development support to assist the dual track approach. we are also providing $48 million in humanitarian assistance this year as well as 8.3 million for humanitarian assistance for those who fled somalia. even in the resource constrained budget environment, the united states government continues to do as much as possible to promote our core goal of building a peaceful and secure somalia. during 2011, we have used funding to assist and clearing the streets of mogadishu provided street lights in mogadishu and provide technical assistance to the ministry of finance to combat collection.
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the piracy problem of the coast of somalia stems from instability, like of governments and economic fragility on land. the tragic death of innocent americans that past february was tragic and provided a german station of the need to do more to address the problem. my colleagues across the agency in putting the state bureau political military affairs of the department of defense have been at the forefront of the u.s. government counter piracy efforts. we must also work with somali authorities and others to enhance the capacity to prosecute suspected pirates and imprisoned those convicted. internationally more focus should be praised on trees in the financial flows and determine who benefits most from piracy. both within somalia as well as externally. through these efforts to place in the context of other challenges we will continue to support efforts aimed at reducing the threat. al-shabaab and its relationship to al qaeda is a significant
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concern for the united states and partners in the region. sustained military pressure from that t. fg national security force amazon. also bob's called on mogadishu dramatically decreased. the opening of additional funds and manila and lower the region foster during his place additional pressure on all chabad's ability to hold the area. as more areas to escape the country, the challenges for somalis to put into place effective administration's capable of providing the governance and services in order to prevent from returning. while we see signs of the control listening in the western region of somalia and mogadishu, we are strongly concerned about the impact on somalia and the region. we continue to monitor the defense and putting influence on al qaeda on the senior al-shabaab leadership. however as an organization, al-shabab is a multiple faction with competing objectives and
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lost territorial control in areas in south and central dalia. the leadership is increasingly fractured and divided with questionable support on the people in many areas. the instability is a product of generations and neglect and corruption. the solution would be the product of generations that consider focus, legitimate in detroit and expectations of results. we continue to focus efforts on somalia in ways that correlates challenges effectively. thank you mr. chairman and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you very much for your testimony and insight. >> thank you, chairman smith, chairman rice, a ranking member pan and distinguished members of the committee. i particularly wish you a safe journey today than your previous ones. thanks very much for this opportunity to testify today on
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the humanitarian crisis and you're continued interest and leadership on this issue. i semidey looker testimony for the record and will just give you a brief -- >> made a point of the record and -- >> i'm sorry, what? and again the full statement it will be made it part of the record in all of the witnesses, if you have a longer submission will also be made part of the record today i will give you a brief update on the situation as well as the u.s. government assistance to help the 2.85 million people in need in somalia. i want to emphasize that although we are focused today on somalia this is a regional crisis with more than 10 million people in the country's who are deeply connected in an arc of drought, crop failure and high livestock mortality. the crisis is further complicated by the continuing conflict in somalia and of our inability to fully and reliably reach more than 1.8 million
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primarily in the south and in parts of central somalia and the outpouring of the refugees into the areas of kenya, ethiopia and djibouti. there as you know have been cyclical drawls for decades and as a result, we have a very advanced early-warning systems that we establish and fund including the famine early warning system network or fuse net and the security nutritional analysis unit. the continually collecting data and provide analysis that has enabled us to prepossession stocks in the region to target our assistance where we can and to look ahead. and according to the usenet, the drought that we are currently seeing in the region is the worst in the horn of africa since the 1950's. in somalia, the combined effect of the consecutive seasons of the poor or field rainfall coupled with the conflict have resulted in the rise in
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inflation from a severe crop failure, high livestock martelle the and significant even alarming malnutrition rates. as a result there are now 1.46 somalis who are internally displaced and taken through the years now 800,000 somali refugees in the greater horn. it takes great resilience for the somalis to continue forward to be it in january, 2011 or early warning systems estimated 2.4 million people in somalia or in crisis and the latest data now indicates 2.85 million people are in need of life saving assistance. this is a 19% increase in six months. and that means that the estimated 9.9 million people in somalia running now need international assistance to survive. and may i traveled to kenya and somalia to ensure that we are able to respond to foley and
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responsibly as we are able to to this crisis and also to express the commitment of the united states to the people of somalia during the critical period. along with special long voyage on yates i traveled to of the autonomous region of somaliland. we met with government officials as well as local and international non-governmental associations. while there we met with the president who expressed his concern over the field of training and loss of livestock and the need for assistance while also expressing deep thanks to the united states for our response and continued assistance. i also spoke with the civil society leader who said we are seeing the end of the past life style as we know it. with a drop in the conflict, continued lack of water in the pasture we are seeing nomads migrating increasingly to the urban areas including to the parts of somaliland and the
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point land adding stranger and already stressed situation. the impact of the drought on the people in somalia's most vividly illustrated in the refugee camps in ethiopia and kenya as a result in an inability to get into other parts of somalia i visited the refugee camp in kenya and talked to several families who have lost all of their livestock or sold their land, had no remaining access and began long walk across somalia to the refugee camps in kenya. we are now seeing the somali refugee populations a riding with global acute malnutrition rates of 40 to 40%. this is more than double the world health organization emergency threshold number of 15%, and we are seeing the severe malnutrition rates at 23%
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in the new arrivals. at seven to eight times higher than the two to 3% that's considered alarming. we are seeing a similar increase in ethiopia, with even higher malnutrition data which my colleague will discuss. but let me make this a very simple to remember. one out of two now arriving in ethiopia is acutely malnourished. one out of three a riding in kenya is acutely malnourished. unfortunately, in somalia we have significant challenges in providing humanitarian assistance primarily in the south and central parts due to the presence of armed groups especially al-shabaab which is a u.s. decimated foreign terrorist organization. the general insecurity and lawlessness prevents aid workers from reliably reaching more than 60% of the people in somalia
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primarily in the south. in january, 2010, the world food program suspended the operation in southern somalia because of threats and an accepted conditions created by these armed groups particularly al-shabaab. many other international and ngos are also unable to operate safely in southern somalia, and this lack of access created a severe and they did humanitarian crisis and contributed to the significant outflow of refugees. in order to deliver assistance to these areas where possible, we developed a risk mitigation strategy with an emphasis on assuring our assistance most in need. we have put into place basic risk mitigation procedures, risk-based assessment and special conditions for our grant agreements and continue to work to ensure the programs in somalia are appropriately unaccountably managed and monitored and reaching those
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areas that we can. as a result we've now provided $48 million in humanitarian assistance and side of somalia this fiscal year. we have been pre-positioning the surprises in the region since the fuse net began warning of the crisis in august, 2010. we are helping to feed 1.2 million people in the accessible areas of somalia and treat tens of thousands malnourished in the countrywide of providing health care, clean water, rehabilitation of basic water infrastructure, proper sanitation, hygiene education and supplies. and we are also working to improve long-term opportunities with our development program with an emphasis on youth and women. we will continue to identify additional opportunities to meet their growing and concerning needs in somalia just two weeks ago week released 19,000 metric
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tons of aid from the regionally prepossession stocks to support general food distribution, supplementary feeding emergency school feeding and mother and child feeding inside of somalia. to help refugees fleeing the country, we've provided over $76 million in life saving assistance. again, the doctor will describe more. in early june we set up the drought task force in the region. we've elevated that just this week to a disaster assistance response team with 20 members in the region. looking ahead, and looking at the most recent data, we expect to tell the situation in the horn to worsen for the end of this year. given limited leverage opportunities, dwindling food stocks, sky-high cereal prices, we believe many households will continue to experience the severe situation and unable to put food on the table. we will see an increased number
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of households that can no longer meet their food needs in the weeks and months ahead. as unfortunate as that is, we also expect the situation in somalia to continue to decline and look for additional ways to provide aid to those in somalia while also providing assistance for those forced to flee. we are coordinating emergency response programs with ongoing development program. we have an estimated budget of 21 million for 2011 and our development program which will continue to look at the building economic and political stability in areas that we can. we consider this an extremely grave situation. we thank you for your support of our ongoing programs and thank you for holding this important hearing today to work this issue. thank you. >> administrator lindborg, thank you for your testimony and
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working so hard to meet the needs of so many suffering people. right now i would ask dr. brigety if he would proceed. >> and afternoon, sherman smith, chairman smith and ranking member pan and distinguished members of the subcommittee. thank you very much for including me on this panel to review the situation of the somali refugees in the horn of africa which is one of the consequences of what many have called a failed state in somalia. today we are facing a critical emergency in what is a projected a somali refugee situation dating back to 1988 when people in northern somalia fled to ethiopia and djibouti to the escape attacks by their own government. a somalian represents the largest rescue g populations in africa, over 750,000 just in the greater horn of africa alone. over 120,000 of those have arrived just since january of
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this year. a few weeks ago, ethiopia opened its sixth cap for the somalis refugees and it is already almost full. the seventh cap is currently in the works. djibouti has announced a second camp as well. and the international community continues to press kenya to promote expansion of the three complex which is home to over 370,000 refugees almost all of which are somalis. you all already may be aware that the camps were open some 20 years ago to house about 90,000 refugees and now hal's over four times as many making it just the camp the fourth largest population center in kenya and the largest refugee camp in the world even in this overcrowded state more than 1,000 refugees had arrived per day over the past few weeks in search of lifesaving assistance.
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indeed the refugee situation has worsened dramatically in the last month with reported new arrivals in june almost doubled in ethiopia and triple for more than was reported in may. ironically, this may be partly a result of the success of pushing back the ambassador yamamoto highlighted freeing some who can still move to do so. though the main contributing factor remains the difficult conditions within somalia. from the humanitarian perspective, what is most critical now is addressing the desperate and the deplorable state of malnutrition which threatens the lives of many newly arriving for refugee children. the have endured the ravages of ongoing conflict and struggle to survive the consequences of al-shabaab food aid in wide swaths of south central somalia. these new arrivals have faced the latest as the assistant
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administrator lindborg noted the entire horn and rifling those on record conducted the 1950's. having sold all but disowned to survive, they have made the arduous mostly on foot for days or even weeks to the safety and humanitarian assistance in camps in kenya and ethiopia. to illustrate the severity of the situation, the international humanitarian community considers an emergency when the rate of global acute malnutrition within the population exceeds 15%. in ethiopia, as the assistant administrator noted, the global acute malnutrition rates close to 50% have been in the refugee. in kenya, the global cute malicious rights of to 40% have been reported among the newly arriving refugees children. the situation is substantially worse than when i last visited the refugee camps in ethiopia in a february of this year.
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newly arrived and children now dawning in the refugee camps at the rate of two to three children every day. during my most recent visit to the region just last week, a senior adviser of the ethiopian government refugee agency and a veteran of the unhcr told me of the condition of near-death of many children as they arrive in the camps. some with skin lesions so deep that you can see their bones and their school and in their arms through their translucent skin. in his words, people are coming from somalia to donley in ethiopia. we must ensure that as many as possible of these children are safe through urgent and timely interventions such as the emergency therapeutic feeding programs and rapid registration to ensure access of refugees to the regular food distribution. there are some of these activities are already under way
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the level is not yet adequate to meet the considerable needs of the population. given the urgent nature of the situation, i will be traveling to the form again tomorrow and plan to visit camps in the southeast of ethiopia which are receiving the best majority of new arrivals and i will be accompanied by a hour ambassador to ethiopia. speed is of the essence as we seek to present additional deaths. yet we cannot forget that this, too, is a regional crisis that will require the combined efforts of the international community also more so as michael fi testified, the drought disaster is putting some 10 million people and risk throughout the horned. the appalling state of the refugees is a stark example of what the drought is doing to the people of the koran and emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive response to address the needs of all of those suffering from this
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crisis. regrettably, the salmon experts tell us the worst of the regional drought crisis is still to come in the months before the next possible race this fall. my bureau, the state department bureau of population refugees and migration which support all refugee protection in efforts except for food aid which is supported by my colleagues from usaid office of food for peace is in the process of programming over $63 million for the horn and will be providing additional funds next week when we expect a new appeal from the office of the commissioner for refugees to which we will be responding. there are clearly many challenges still ahead. countries in the port are understandably wary of posting hundreds of thousands of refugees. some such as kenya in the early 1990's have seen refugee inflows reached 1,000 per day and are very much want to avoid repeating these experiences.
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some such as yemen are in great turmoil themselves. the event in sudan can generate more sudanese refugees in the coming months. a security incite much of south central somalia is not conducive to the mounting successful humanitarian operations that might reach of those in need where they are. for example, i understand the efforts of the u.n. humanitarian team this week to assess conditions in humanitarian access in areas along the border and kenya and ethiopia were derailed by the presence of roadside bombs and land mines. as a consequence, we must ensure safe places of asylum in the countries neighboring somalia continue to exist and that refugees can find security as well as life-saving assistance. we will continue to work with our colleagues in the u.s. government and with our counterparts in other countries to achieve these goals.
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we welcome your support. we are grateful for it, and i would welcome any questions that you may have. thank you very much. >> thank you very much. let me begin -- we have a recorded vote. one of the vital and necessary distractions that we face during the day and it will be about an hour's worth of voting. so i will ask some questions in the outset and rapid fire and then ask my colleagues if we could all ask questions and hopefully get it done that way and go to our second panel when we return. very quickly, ms. lindborg, the unmet food need obviously is of land in that catastrophic situation of malnutrition. what is the lack of donor aid, what is the unmet need in the dollars and cents, and is there an inability to deliver a because conflicts we can't get the security aide to people
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because of occupied in the light. it's given us a great insight as to what's coming on the malnutrition. what are we looking at in terms of menacing disease. we know many diseases are manifesting already. are there as those on their way for can go for some of those diseases to dr. brigety you mentioned in the appeal what was going to ask you about if you might touch on what that unmet need, but you anticipate the needs will be so we can hopefully meet hour very significant obligations from the humanitarian point of view so if you can speak about the inside and outside proximity to the refugee camps we know that camps all over the world are often menaced by threats especially to women you find these as well and then ambassador yamamoto, there are rules of engagement. are they robust enough? there are some who suggest that there are actual presence that
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hurt the tfg ability to rule primarily because of a aversion to a sense of an occupied force even if that forces denied as the force obviously is. the resilience of al-shabaab in his testimony talks about the resilience. the a devotee to adapt to read what is our take on that and what is the troop strength is not to call the truth, terrorist strength of al-shabaab how big is it and are the weapons coming through sudan or any of those weapons coming from china with regards to the pirates, dr. murphy pointed out in his testimony and others point of and the testimony as well the needs to be lan solution, and i think it is obvious as you briefly can touch on that, sharon? >> i will be very brief.
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deputy assistant secretary yamamoto, if i could ask you this question when the last administration left office, there was an internal debate over whether iraq should be designated as a state-sponsored terrorism for the support for al-shabaab it didn't happen at the time but just after she left the government service former assistant secretary frazier ran a good piece in "the wall street journal" and 15 it should be listed as a state-sponsored terrorism we have you been report after u.n. report citing their support for al-shabaab. the case is pretty cut and dried. assistant secretary carson testified flat out that they continue to supply weapons and ammunition to extremists and terrorist elements. we are trying to put them on different and i think now is the
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time to press. we argued here that many of the problems can't be solved by military means alone and here's the chance. here's a chance for diplomacy to devotee to this would put that question to you. >> thank you. >> with a 12 months that would be used now for elections in somalia do you think the tfg will be able to handle it and what do you think the new move with the new prime minister between the president and the prime minister and about one-third of prime minister on the tf tfg be able to put elections on the course and if
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we have enough forces to contain al-shabaab who as you know was getting support from al-shabaab or al qaeda, and do you see whether the government is being able to win that battle, and finally, i was the last member of conagra's to visit their several years ago, and have been able to talk to the president. i wonder in your opinion as we are going to move fourth and i have respect for the congressman rice's position. do you think that the designation -- once you get on the terrorist list, that's it forever and that can close off any kind of possibility. is there in your opinion a last-minute opportunity to see
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with the president did when he first came the he was interested in having some dialogue, do you think that it's to shut off totally that which i am totally not seeing it absolutely everything points to the fact that there should be something done or do you think a last minute shot at attempting to see if the government can be convinced that it should try to cooperate, still at the point where once that designation those it stays. the president mandela just was able to get off the terrorist list last year because they said anc was a terrorist organization in the 60's and 70's and 80's and we were able to push the administration to take president mandela off the terrorist list
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just last year. once you get on that list you're there for ever. so what your opinion. as best you can answer the question. >> as fortunate as it is we expect the situation of somalia will continue to decline and famine conditions are possible there's a concerted international effort to try to meet what are not just food needs but their water, clean drinking water needs and ability of people to access suppliers that are still available to them. we are seeing about a 200 million-dollar funding gap, even with the $349 million that we along with premier li eco japan and more we have provided
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toward the u.n. funding appeal and we've provided about $48.4 million. we have more in the pipeline and are looking hard how we can responsibly provide that assistance. unfortunately, there is difficulty in reaching nearly 61% of those somalis who live in the south and parts of central somalia and the terrorist group and the inability to reliably and safely provide assistance. in terms of diseases because of the ongoing programs that have been conducted by u.s. aid and others 933 cone 95% of the children we can reach have received polio immunizations. for a sample, to show the power of those interventions, and we've been able to prevent the reoccurrence of that. what we are more concerned right and what we have seen as children come across the border is malnutrition and disease is
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related to lack of the sanitation and lack of clean drinking water so the respiratory diseases, gastrointestinal and malnutrition diseases for the possibility of those kind of epidemics occur all too frequently common in these situations and thus far in the camps at least we've been able to address that. the concern of course is as conditions continue to deteriorate into serious difficult to reach. thank you for the questions. in the interest of time i will do my best to be brief but i'm happy to elaborate in the response if you would like that. with regard to the unhcr appeal we do not yet know exactly what the size of the shortfall was going to be treated at the high commissioner for refugees has publicly said there is a shortfall not only for the horn but indeed for the entirety of
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the program. he has directed at unhcr of with a $20 million of the reserve. to respond to quickly to the crisis. he's also, i should say, traveling to the region and will be there tomorrow. to go to the camps in both ethiopia and kenya. and the revised emergency appeal probably on monday. we are prepared to respond generously i suspect we will respond as we have traditionally responded with about 25% of the total of that appeal and will depend on exactly what the size is the we will be able to let you know as soon as we do. with regard to security, campus security is always an issue at every refugee camp. i think it's fair to say it is particularly an issue in kenya, and that is true probably for two reasons one is the sheer size of the cap i don't do if you have a chance to visit. its massive, it's really
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massive. there are security incidents within the camp without a fair amount of and frequency of the canyon ministry does have some available on the periphery but continues to be an issue but the camps inside of ethiopia i think it's probably out of comparative basis security is slightly better but that's largely because the and the camps are frankly have that the nature of the population is at least 90% women and children there are those camps in ethiopia but that's been to be one of the things i will be looking at intensely when i go to the region tomorrow. >> your question, germans that i would add because this is a regional crisis the totality of the united states assistance in the region is currently a $360 million. and that is just to underscore the stress that the refugees are
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placing on the drought affected communities in kenya and ethiopia as well. so there has been -- where we are able to reliably reach people throughout the region a generous response from the united states that has been critical, critical for saving lives throughout the region. >> thank you. >> investor yamamoto? >> right now it's up to 10,000 troops and trying to get to the number that we need by 12,000 troops they probably will not make that number. we are looking at other contributing countries from west africa to southern central, but again, we want to say that they are doing a tremendous job since the operation started the lost 200 troops and we are trying to do the best we can to provide the assistance and support that they need. as i said over the last four years, and this is for years we've given about $258 million
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compared to other operations. it's not a lot of money but we are trying to do the best we can to support the amazon as far as training, logistical support, and to give the capacity and the capability to protect their troops against the al-shabaab, the others are $85 million to the tfg to get them to and the capacity so that they can fight the war. ultimately the amazon troops can only do so much that this really has to be a fight at the war conducted and prosecuted by the somalis themselves and that's what i'm trying to do is give the support and the assistance >> on the piracy it is symptomatic of the instability within somalia. as the ambassador in djibouti we have the first cargo ship being hijacked and as if that is not a good thing from that point on we have seen the rate of hijacking
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and staking grow from about 11 ships to about 276 hostages to earlier this year about 53 ships and over 500 hostages, and that has kind of gone down now to 17 to 390 hostages because that is the monsoon season and this increase is taking place at the time we are expanding the international presence of task force one 50, 151, it underscores the problem is basically not a piracy issue would reflective of the instability in somalia and that is an issue that we need to target and confront. the secretary of state outlined and articulate it several points we need to do and that is what we are trying and to do to prosecute the naval operations and the capacity building, looking at the prosecution incarceration. as you know right now the united states has taken 28 highlights and of the 17 have been
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convicted and the others are still awaiting prosecution. the most recent has been taken to new york city. the other issue is we are looking at the best practices, how we can expand and communicate and also disrupt piracy enterprises, and that is what the congressman royce and smith used to kid articulately that we need to look at how we can disrupt all the financial assistance that's being accumulated by the pirates and the assistance coming in from outside and to the pirates as well as arms flows and other issues. going to the questions on the state sponsored terrorism that is a very difficult question. at the end of the last administration it was as a country of concern and therefore it was an area or country that we are looking at and now because of its support for aimed against ethiopia but also the
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regional at the camps we are also looking very carefully and also the arms flows not just eritrea but all countries in all areas and one of the things we've learned in somalia is we need to keep out and all outsiders to give them an opportunity to resolve the problems themselves because ultimately this has to be a somalia approach and solution. the designation is a difficult one. it's an issue that we are discussing and are trying to get as much evidence together to discuss this. you raise an argument. the last u.s. official to visit was -- >> let me interrupt you just very briefly. our chief specialist for african affairs on the subcommittee on the majority side stay and hear the remainder of your comments. we are at cno in the house floor
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in votes. if you could respond, dr. martin did raise an issue and then go back to your response about the maritime ships at sea that are attacked and talks about restrictive rules of engagement. if you can think of that as well because as he points out as a hearing experience and you go through great detail about the fact it needs to be controlled so if you could speak to that. skank thank you all for your extraordinary testimony and your work. thank you. >> as far as the issue of the rules of engagement from the privacy and 151 was set to address the privacy issue the u.s. navy along with a round 24 other countries have contributed to troopships for around 48 over 48 ships to look at an area
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expensive and difficult to monitor and during the seasons they are able to use other ships to go far from their bases in somalia into other areas of the red sea and the to the ships. it's a very difficult task, it's a tremendous problem to get all of these mother ships, but i think rules of engagement is as the secretary had articulate it to coordinate with our allied countries but to coordinate with all the other countries within the region to address the privacy issue we talked to and the addition of the country's and tanzania, ethiopia, djibouti and kenya and also somaliland to look at how we can address is
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not to handle the spirits but more important as to work with these countries as well as the international partners that there has to be the virus or captured and they have to have shared a prosecution, imprisonment and the legal process and procedures and going back to what congressman payne had said on the eritrea issue is the last official visit was june of 2010 and in that process our message to president and the eritrea leadership has been clear has been clear of persons and that is a hand of discussion and opening of discussion and dialogue and we haven't received a response from the government. in fact since that time, my visa to return remains in at the
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embassy enacted on and the application has remained at the embassy for over a year and a half and so our position is to engage the to look at the areas we can engage with them but the response has been negative. again, on the ss t we continue to look on a wide variety of areas from the gold mining factories run by the canadian firm which is producing profits in excess of several million dollars for the initiative will be probably more. are we looking at tax collection that they have obtained in the united states. we look at also the foreign exchange reserves and say is this according to the u.s. and international financial institutions, so everything is looked at and examine.
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i do not wish to make any comments or steegmans at this point because those things are still under research and it's not just eritrea, it's a lot of factors that are in somalia trying to present from playing a destructive or not a destructive role. another question is you ask one last thing which was on the financing for the african union a transitional federal government, again, we work very closely with the government to ensure that they will address this one year period. as you know, the accord which was signed on june 9th really resolved a stalemate where we were headed into august 20 even without any resolution to the transition of the government, so what we want to do is look at this agreement achieved that in the next year how can we push
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the government to words those elections, how can we act on it and implement the agreement made by the court which is reform coming electoral process and that gft and areas we continue to look at closely not only as the tfg and amazon and of the nation's but also the states in the donor countries. so that's kind of a summary of interest we will make. >> thank you, mr. ambassador and to all the panel. on behalf of the chairman, we are in recess. thank you. tay
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mr. president, i rise today to recognize nasa sts 135s mission as the presiding officer knows if at approximately 11:30i tomosrrow of the space shuttle ttlantis is o lift off from thepace kennedy space center. believe to deliversu supplies, logistics and spare parts to th. international space station. this will be the final mission a of the space shuttle that begans just over 30 years ago. now a asenator from colorado my not se mem like the most likely person to come to the fore todat to speak about the space shuttle. but nasa and space exploration have quite a bit to do with colorado, and exit's somethingwh that i care deeply about. hasnef there's one of the three top aerospace economies in the country with a hand in every eve aspectry of space. and
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government, commercial and sirvings a elademic, civil and military. h we help develop the space shuttle and manyshuttl of the m that flew on it. and we are playing a major role in the development of the nasa a successors. now nasa has been a source of fm pride for all americans from its very beginnings. the we have cheered the triumphs ann sufferedd with them during theii tragedies and all the while i we've been inspired by their mission of exploration. no it is no exception. t 1er since the first launch in april of 1981, the names of thes space shuttles, colombia, challenger, discovery, atlantisd and endeavor have become casualveno even this is testament to theers. vee itself and of those behind i would like to acknowledge all of us who have fought on the shuttle, the thousands of issue
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arose that support them and the contractors to many companies to name make all possible. in sum, falling into the shuttle is a true team effort. the team should be proud of what they have accomplished.olleague i see my colleague from florida across the chamber, and i know he's also very aware that this has been a team effort across the board. and i know i would be remiss atn this point if i didn't mention those who pay the ultimate price for their service. we will never forget the images of horrible tragedies that da silva shall. secds one occurring milliseconds after leaving the polls gravity. the other just minutes away from beingai home again. we will also remember the crews of the space shuttle challenger and columbia. space flight forces us to

U.S. Senate
CSPAN July 7, 2011 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT


TOPIC FREQUENCY Us 26, U.s. 24, Ethiopia 23, United States 20, America 14, Africa 9, Washington 9, Mogadishu 9, U.n. 7, Somaliland 7, Rhode Island 6, Mr. Reid 6, Yamamoto 4, Nasa 4, Smith 4, Somalia 3, Sudan 3, Obama 3, Mr. Whitehouse 3, Lindborg 2
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